Teas of the World: Low-Grown Sri Lankan (Ceylon) Teas

Last but not least, here are some low elevation (low-grown) Ceylon teas.

The number 3 or 4 player in tea growing in the world is the island nation off the south coast of India. Formerly named “Ceylon,” it is now called Sri Lanka. The teas, though, are still referred to as Ceylon teas. They are used in many blends, including brands like Barry’s and PG Tips, instead of being sold by themselves. But more and more you can find pure Ceylon teas and even some from various tea estates available.

A lovely Ceylon with a dash of milk and grapes on the side.
A lovely Ceylon with a dash of milk and grapes on the side.

Topography

Sri Lanka has elevations ranging from sea level to 7,000 or more feet above sea level. Their tea growing regions occupy three different elevation zones: high, mid, and low. The elevations of each zone, though, seems indeterminate, with different feet ranges posted on different sites. One site says they are: “Low Grown (sea level to 600meters), Mid Grown (600meters to 1200 meters) and High Grown (1200 meters upward).” For our purposes here, I have gone by the designation used on the sites of some tea vendors who specialize in Ceylon teas.

Some Low Elevation Tea Estates/Factories

  • Golden Garden (elev. not specified, Galle region) — This tea garden dates from 1906 when the first tea plants were planted by the owner’s grandfather. The garden is still a family business but has been expanding to include two additional tea estates and a trading arm. They use modern technology yet have a respect for tradition, gaining them a reputation as one of the island’s most successful units tea producers.
  • New Vithanakande (elev. not specified, Sabaragamuva region) — Like Ampittiakande, this plantation was also named after the ‘Vidanes’ (people who harvested in the region for an ancient King). The factory here also has modern equipment, producing well-known teas that are in great demand, selling for top prices at auction.
  • Lumbini (elev. not specified, Deniyaya District) — A producer of fine teas. The plantation is small but run with such efficiency, with man and machinery coordinating fully, that they serve as an example to others.
  • Cecilyan (600 feet, Sabaragamuwa District) — In one of the finest tea-producing areas on Sri Lanka. Until recently, they only manufactured orthodox teas. Now they also produce excellent CTC teas that have garnered a reputation from tea lovers around the world.
  • Echkay (600 feet, Sabaragamuwa District) — Some of the most consistent low grown teas from Sri Lanka. The privately owned factory produces limited quantities of tea and is considered a “boutique tea” dealer.
  • Batapola (600 feet, Sabaragamuwa District) — High quality production teas, using green leaf from neighboring plantations (the factory is therefore classified as “bought leaf”). Some of the finest orthodox, low-grown, teas from Sri Lanka.

Don’t miss our next stop on this virtual world tea tour!

See also:
Ceylon Black Tea
Sylvakandy Estate Ceylon Tea — Sheer Delight!
Reading Tea Leaves — Ceylon Teas
Darjeeling vs. Ceylon Teas
Main Ceylon Tea Growing Regions
Ceylon Blends
You Say Sri Lanka, Tea Drinkers Say Ceylon
Review — Sylvakandy Estate Orange Pekoe

See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

One thought on “Teas of the World: Low-Grown Sri Lankan (Ceylon) Teas

  1. Pingback: Tea vs. Coffee in Sri Lanka | Tea Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s